Participation in SOC’s 2015 Technical Standards Needs survey increased significantly from 60 responses collected in 2013 to 245 responses collected this summer from individuals familiar with Wisconsin’s technical standards used in statewide conservation programs. The respondents were more evenly distributed across private sector and public sector agencies and were more diverse in the primary focus of their conservation work. The survey results are used to prioritize revisions and the development of effective technical standards in SOC’s 2016-2017 Work Plan.
The responses in the survey confirmed that the proposed list of standards scheduled to be revised was largely consistent with the survey results. However, the results also indicated that more work is needed to improve the standard criteria and implementation. Many suggestions for those improvements were provided. Based on these results, two additional WDNR standards, Ditch Checks (1062) and Hydraulic Erosion Control Product (1058/new), were added to the SOC Work Plan.
The top two priorities for NRCS included:
- Grassed Waterways (412)
- Vegetated Treatment Areas (635)
The top two priorities for WDNR included:
- Vegetated Infiltration Swale (1005)
- Site Evaluation for Infiltration (1002)
Another important point gathered from the results emphasized the need for greater outreach, implementation, and potentially enforcement. SOC will work towards promoting more regular opportunities to educate users on newly revised standards, and support the State Inter-agency Training Committee (SITCOM) to address the training needs.
The comments related to the technical standard improvements were given to the appropriate Custodian agencies for further review and consideration. The comments bring attention to and reiterate the need to find solutions. Providing input through this survey, commenting on draft standards, and participating on standard revision teams are all strategies SOC uses to incorporate “on the ground” experience into Wisconsin’s technical standards. Thanks to all of you who completed the survey. Your continued input is valuable.